Raj Bhavsar, IYSF Secretary General
Raj Bhavsar is an American artistic gymnast of Indian descent. He earned a bronze medal as a member of the 2008 U.S. Olympic Team. In 2004, Raj missed competing in Athens and was named alternate to the team, after which he turned to yoga and philosophy to garner an Olympic birth four years later in Beijing.
Raj credits most of his success to the study and practice of yoga and believes the practice is a fundamental step on the path to self-realization. Raj believes asana (posture) competitions provide a medium in which athletes can expand on their practice, develop a healthy competitive spirit, and learn self mastery under pressure situations. “Practitioners of yoga should have a chance to showcase their art.”
His Olympic triumph was a featured human interest piece on NBC during the 2008 Olympics and has awarded him a trip to The White House with President George W. Bush. He was also a guest on the Oprah Winfrey Show and the TODAY show.
Bhavsar created two new skills in gymnastics which are now named after him. Raj continues to be involved in the sport as an advisor to the U.S. National Gymnastics Team and as an elite sports clinician, coaching and speaking to youth level athletes nationwide. For two years he was a performing artist for Cirque du Soleil’s cinema based show, “IRIS.”
Raj currently works with several organizations as a brand ambassador and business partner. He started his first company while in college at The Ohio State University and has been an entrepreneur ever since. As a marketing and operations specialist, the impact he’s had on the companies he’s worked with has been profound.
As a nationwide motivational speaker, Raj discusses the human side of business and athletic success principles that transfer into business development. His featured speech, “Realize Your Journey,” has reached clients such as Deloitte, St. Lukes Health Management Systems, and Dream University by Marcia Wieder.
Raj has been fortunate to give back to communities by working with organizations such as Nanubhai Educational Outreach Program, Jerry’s Kids, and The Miracle Wish Foundation.
You can find Raj in the highly acclaimed book, Roshni, “The Light of South Asia,” as a notable Indian American who has made an impact on the world.